There are various reasons you may need a bend in the TC. For example, your roaster's fins may pass close to the faceplate, so a thermocouple installed there may requires a slight bend to avoid interfering with the rotation of your drum. Sometimes you may need extra clearance to open a door or panel.
If you source a thermocouple from RoastLog, you will receive either a 1/8" or 3/16" diameter, stainless-steel probe.
With care, thermocouples can be bent if absolutely necessary. Here are some guidelines for doing so.
Do not bend it if you don't need to.
Preferably, bend using a tube bender with at least a 3/4" bend radius.
In lieu of a tube bender, use a pipe or other cylindrical object with a 3/4" radius.
In lieu of that, you can use your hands, very carefully.
Do not attempt a very sharp bend - be safe and avoid bends beyond 90 degrees.
Do not bend near to the tube transition, where the stainless steel shaft goes into the TC housing.
Don't repeatedly bend back and forth. The stainless steel will break - a lot like the way the tab comes off a soda can.
In short, take your time, do it carefully, and you can bend your probe without damaging your TC.